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Vegan Sukiyaki Rolls with Rainbow Veggies and Tofu

This sukiyaki roll stew is heartwarming, comforting, nourishing, and refreshing all at the same time. It's made of lots of colorful vegetables - napa cabbage, carrots, purple carrots, cilantro, and air-fried golden crispy tofu. And the bonus part? The broth that these rolls are cooked in is also heavenly flavorful and a perfect element to complete this meal.

I know we all love, love, loved the Chinese style napa cabbage rolls I make every year for the Lunar New Year, so this is kind of like a Japanese and more soupy version. It is inspired, of course, by the iconic Japanese Sukiyaki dish, which consists of assorted vegetables, meat, tofu, and such, slow-cooked and simmered in a nabe, aka a pot.

To make a vegan version of Sukiyaki and also make it a bit easier and fun to eat, I wrapped different colors of vegetables in blanched napa cabbage leaves, rolled them up, cut each one in half and stacked them neatly in my donabe, which is a traditional Japanese stoneware pot, you can use any ceramic pot, enamel pot, or any thick and good quality pot you have.

And I just wanna say do take a good slurp of the broth after the rolls are cooked! All the gorgeous flavors from the vegetables and tofu, the subtle sweetness from napa cabbage, are simmered into the broth, making it so incredibly flavorful and refreshing.

Watch the video below to follow the steps and refer to the written recipe for measurements and more detailed instructions. If you try this recipe please tag me on Instagram and Tiktok I'd love to see them! 



INGREDIENTS:

*please see notes for alternatives

7-8 Napa cabbage leaves

1 orange carrot

1 purple carrot

1 bunch of fresh cilantro

14 oz extra firm tofu

2 tablespoon Yondu Vegetable Umami Sauce plus 2 teaspoon *see notes

1 cup water


TO MAKE:

- Cut the tofu block into 1/4 inch thick slices, transfer into a large shallow bowl and marinate with 2 tbsp of the Yondu sauce for 20 - 30 minutes;

- Take off the napa cabbage leaves one by one carefully, bring a large pot of water to boil, quickly blanch the cabbage leaves for about 20 seconds until just soft but not overcooked;

- Run the blanched cabbage leaves under cold water to cool them down immediately to stop further cooking, lay them flat on some kitchen towels;

- Once the tofu is done marinating, air fry them at 400°F for 15 minutes, or pan fry until golden brown on both sides;

- Cut the tofu into thin strips;

- Prep other veggies by cutting them into strips of roughly the same length;

- Take one napa cabbage leave, trim off the root, add all the fillings at the bottom white part and roll up tightly till the end;

- Cut into halves, repeat until you use up all the napa cabbage leaves;

- Stack the rolls tightly in a pot, I used a Japanese donabe, feel free to use any ceramic, enamel, or good quality thick pot you have;

- Mix the cup with 2 tsp of Yondu sauce, pour over the rolls;

- Cover, and bring to a gentle boil, then let it simmer uncovered for 5 minutes until the veggies are tender but not mushy;

- Serve hot with some steamed rice, enjoy!


NOTES:

- You can use basically any vegetables you have, like sweet red pepper, zucchini, mushrooms, etc. But keep in mind if you use something very colorful like purple cabbage, beets, or even the purple carrot I used, they're gonna "bleed" a little after simmering in the broth, making the napa cabbage leaves a bit pink or purple;

- If you don't have the Yondu vegetable umami sauce, you can get it on Amazon linked in text, or simply marinate the tofu with 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, and use vegetable stock plus 1 teaspoon of soy sauce for the broth, OR, you can also make a dashi, by soaking a 2 x 2 inch piece of kombu and 2 dried shiitake mushrooms in 1 cup of hot water.


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